With over 1 000 bidders from 48 countries worldwide, Koller
s June/July auction series was a resounding success across all categories, with each department registering hammer prices well over the pre-sale estimates. World auction records were set for prints by Warhol, Lichtenstein, Alberto Giacometti, as well as for an oil painting by Ukrainian artist Abraham Manievich.
Impressionist & Modern Art
French impressionist & modern art was highly sought after in the 2 July auction, led by Marc Chagalls classic Bouquet dété, which garnered CHF 1.58 million (lot 3251). A seven-figure price was also realised for a landscape by Alfred Sisley, Tournant du Loing à Moret, 1896 (lot 3224, CHF 1.01 million). Two bronze sculptures with impeccable provenances also elicited highly competitive bidding: Auguste Rodins iconic The Kiss, which could be traced back to its exact casting date (lot 3218, CHF 925 000), and Ossip Zadkines Les Trois Surs, which remained in the artists personal collection until the end of his life (lot 3258, CHF 464 000). An 1891 small-format work by Edouard Vuillard, Femme devant un vitrage (lot 3209), sold for ten times its estimate at CHF 317 000, and a landscape by Gustave Loiseau (lot 3210) quadrupled its estimate at CHF 244 000.
Five works from a private Swiss collection by Ukrainian émigré artist Abraham Manievich caused a sensation in the auction, all selling for multiples of their estimates. A winter scene from 1913, Neige dans la forêt (lot 3213), set a new auction record for the artist at CHF 305 000. A work by Max Liebermann, Study for the Net Menders (lot3203), which belonged to the businessman and art collector Robert Neumann when he was forced to flee Nazi Germany, nearly tripled it estimate, selling for CHF 354 000. Two works by Paul Klee, Kleine Landschaft (lot 3238) and Côte de Provence 5 (lot 3241) both sold for above their upper estimates at CHF 366 000 and CHF 342 000.
Works by Ferdinand Hodler continued to elicit competitive bidding and strong prices in the 2 July auction of Swiss Art, such as the masterfully rendered Lake Geneva seen from Chexbres, 1911, which fetched CHF 2.56 million (lot 3035), and Lake Thun seen from Breitlauenen, 1906, which sold for CHF 1.14 million (lot 3029). All of the important paintings by Hodler in the auction found buyers, such as the striking portrait of Clara Pasche-Battié from 1914 (lot 3041, CHF 464 000), and the Orator from Unanimity (lot 3038, CHF 427 000). Félix Vallottons Falaise à Vasouy, 1910 (lot 3044), nearly doubled its estimate at CHF 557 000. Albert Ankers Girl knitting by a window sold for above its upper estimate at CHF 1.4 million. And further works by Augusto Giacometti, Gottardo Segantini, and Adolf Dietrich fetched prices in the six-figure range, demonstrating the continued solidity of this market at Koller.
PostWar & Contemporary, Prints & Multiples
The Contemporary Art auction on 1 July was headed by a triptych by Alighiero Boetti, Aeri, 1984, which sold for above its upper estimate at CHF 366 000 (lot 3452), and a work by Andy Warhol from the Toys series, Terrier (lot 3455), that fetched CHF 200 000. There were six auction records set in the Prints & Multiples auction, including two for works by Andy Warhol: Volkswagen, 1985 (lot 3677, CHF 110 000), and Pine Barrens Tree Frog, 1983 (lot 3678, CHF 104 000), and I Love Liberty by Roy Lichtenstein (lot 3688, CHF 85 700). Two further screenprints by Warhol, Rebel Without a Cause (James Dean) and Joseph Beuys (lots 3680 and 3681) each sold for CHF 146 000.
Watches & Jewellery
The auctions of Watches and Jewellery on 30 June were also unqualified successes, with hammer prices totalling 224% of the estimates for watches, and 114% for jewellery. A Burma ruby and diamond ring fetched CHF 810 000 against an estimate of CHF 180 000/280 000 (lot 2058). A rare Rolex Daytona Paul Newman wristwatch (lot 2870) was the subject of an intense bidding war which pushed its price to over four times the estimate, selling for CHF 625 000.